First semester was a lot. It’s been kind of like dipping my toe in the pool to a life I only knew through movies, magazines, and my parent’s stories. & no lie the adjustment has been real. Part of me feels like I’ll never stop missing being able to make eggs in a kitchen that has been ~for real~ cleaned or having a closet that I can actually fit my boots into, but none the less, there’s a certain something that keeps me missing the Terp life while I’m away.
I’m starting to see a pattern in my latest posts- LISTS. Maybe it’s because they’re fast and easy and I have about 10 seconds to write this. But, I’ll try and break the habit over break. Adding it to the to-do list right now…
Top three things I learned about myself, my school, and my distaste for being alone:
Not Always One and the Same.
Everyone’s college experiences have different circumstances and I’ve learned a lot about different family and relationship dynamics that I hadn’t been exposed to before. Nothing is picture perfect, and I think its been really valuable to catch glimpses at how people deal with and learn from not-so-fun situations.
I’ve really had to master the idea that sometimes you can’t help someone fix themselves because you aren’t where they’re coming from. It’s really easy to say to do something or to try to put yourself in their shoes, but when you don’t have the genuine emotions and attachment, there’s a disconnect that can’t be forged through listening. Honestly, I’m still learning this lesson. I love to be the Dr. Phil & make all my friends’ problems just fade away, but sometimes you can’t. No, I’m not a psychology major. Just a loving person.
Being alone doesn’t make you alone.
Key lesson, learn it now: spending time by yourself doesn’t equate having no friends and being a loner. It means that everyone here is on a different time schedule and even if you want a lunch-buddy, sometimes you have to settle for Netflix.
Believe me, spend days and nights alone on end and you’ll start to lose it, but that’s when it’s really important for you to have someone to fall onto. I’ve realized the best way to have plans is to make plans. Sometimes you have to make sacrifices- give up your warm, amazing bed to venture to the dorm next door for candy and girl talk, but once I became proactive about finding people to be with, the rest kind of fell into place. Nothing bonds friends faster than cold weather, a bag of sour gummy worms, and confessing cringe-worthy stories.
But also, being alone means watching TV without headphones, sneezing without covering your mouth, and not having to share that bag of gummies. So enjoy your you-time. It’s not all bad.
You don’t have to be the smartest. You don’t have to get an A+.
This has been the hardest thing for me to come to terms with. I’m a baby perfectionist with a love for high numbers and first letters of the alphabet. But for the first time in my academic life it’s not really realistic to get the best grades out there. I think a big part of it is that I expect my hardest, best work to be capable of getting an A+, when in reality, college classes aren’t designed that way.
I kind of regret how much energy I put into trying to get the highest grades possible because I feel like I missed out on some really memorable experiences. I’m not saying I didn’t enjoy first semester, because that’s 100% not true. I love the life I’ve made for myself, my friends, my routines, but I feel like the pressure to be perfect in the classroom has definitely been more than just a sticky note on my bulletin board of to-dos. Sometimes you just have to say “Screw it, I’m going out tonight.” Not sure how or when I’ll get there, but isn’t life just a work in progress? I’ve got potential.
& As Olivia says to me after every not-so-hot test grade, “Cs Get Degrees.”
So here’s to growing, changing, and learning to appreciate the fun in not having your nose in a textbook. Happy winter break. Never needed it more.
Stuck in my head: Drifting // On An On
Snap it: Filmore, Silver Spring (Jon Bellion)
Please pardon the fact that finals ended last week and this is being posted now. Everyone needs a couple minutes to just not care. I was taking mine. But no worries, I’m back and better than ever.